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Google beefs up Play Pass with over 150 new apps, games

Titles added to the subscription service's library include Sonic the Hedgehog and Golf Peaks.

Google Play Pass now features more than 500 apps and games.

Google on Tuesday updated its Play Pass library of games, apps and digital content, adding more than 150 titles such as Sonic the Hedgehog and Golf Peaks. Google also added to its selection of kid-friendly apps and games with new titles from Sesame Workshop, Learny Land and others.

The company likewise announced the release of the narrative puzzle game The Almost Gone and teased the availability later this year of puzzle game The Gardens Between and the tower defense game Kingdom Rush. The monthly subscription service now offers more than 500 apps and games -- without ads or in app purchases.

The service, which launched in September for a monthly rate of $4.99, said a new $29.99 annual subscription option will arrive in the US in the next week. Play Pass is also expanding around the world, with availability this week on Android devices in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Spain and the UK.

The updates come as tech giants and media companies have been more broadly experimenting with subscription services. Play Pass is similar to Apple Arcade, a service from the iPhone maker that launched last year and also costs $4.99 a month. Apple's offering, though, focuses solely on games and has a library of about 100 titles.

Google has made a big push into gaming, taking on established heavyweights Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. In December, the tech giant launched Stadia, a service that lets people stream games from the cloud instead of playing them on a console.